Nik’s Reuben Ramekins

(Note: Nik accidentally left her other camera at home today so Nik doesn’t have process pics for this YET. But tomorrow morning I will so…stay tuned! We now return to our regularly scheduled nominousness…)

I am now officially addicted to ramekin cooking.

Why? Mostly because it’s automatic portion control, it’s easy to figure up just a few ramekins full of something (I’ve been trying to look out for my single-with-no-kids peeps more)…and ramekins are just darn cute!

So this week my offering is a spin one of the most classic deli offerings – the Reuben sandwich! For those outside the U.S., or who just don’t know what the hell a Reuben is, basically it is a sandwich made up of corned beef or pastrami (sometimes both) topped with either Thousand Island or Russian dressing (and I still can’t figure out the difference between the two), onions and sauerkraut on toasted rye bread.

In researching this recipe, I came across so many variations of Reuben flavors (that do NOT involve sandwiching it between two butter slathered pieces of bread and grilling it) that I had a bunch of options to choose from.

I decided on a spin on a Reuben dip. First, let me correct one thing. I raved and raved about my little 2 oz. ramekins that I found. Guess what? Even  Nik gets her measurments wrong sometimes! Looking at them more closely, I began to suspect they weren’t four ounces but they weren’t two either. They are 3 oz ramekins! (Who knew such things existed? That’s the magical thing about the dollar store 🙂

Nik’s Reuben Ramekin
(makes two 3 oz. ramekins or three 2 oz. ramekins)


2 oz. deli sliced corned beef, sliced into strips
2 oz. pastrami (I used Jenny-O turkey pastrami), cut into strips
OR you can simply use 4 oz. of whichever of the above two you like best!
½ c. onions, either finely diced (for newbies) or in slivers (for further outs)
2 slices reduced fat Swiss cheese (I used Sargento)
3 tbsp Greek yogurt
2 heaping tablespoons reduced fat Thousand Island (or Russian) dressing (I used Fit & Active)
¼ c. canned sauerkraut


In a pan sprayed with nonstick, sautee your onions until slightly caramelized and then add your meat and sautee. If you are a newer post-op, only sautee until the meat is warm. I personally like my meat a bit crispy, but I’m three years out. You do NOT want to get anything stuck, so stay soft newbies! (NOTE: If you don’t want to use onions, a few shakes of onion powder on your meat works from a flavor perspective)

Lay out your Swiss cheese on a cutting board and, using either a biscuit cutter or an empty ramekin, make two round cheese discs and set aside. Dice up the rest of the cheese from each slice.

In a bowl, combine Greek yogurt, dressing, and diced cheese. Add hot meat/onion mixture and sauerkraut and stir.

Fill ramekins with meat mixture and top with cheese disc.

Bake at 350 (and I didn’t even bother with the oven for this, opting to use my toaster oven instead) for about 10 minutes or until the cheese is browned and melty.

Now, for some of you, a Reuben just isn’t a Reuben without the rye bread. I personally like this all by itself. I imagine, though, if I were serving others, I might slice up one of those mini-loaves of rye bread and toast them into crostinis.

For our consumption, I’d say either go with a reduced fat Triscuit or something like a Wasa Rye crisp bread. Either works well from a calorie and fiber perspective.

But I ate one of these for breakfast this morning (yes, breakfast. I do my blog cooking usually at about 5 a.m. so it’s a natural fit) and after eating my little 3 oz. portion I felt like I’d eaten a full Sunday dinner. So you might not even need any starch!

And for my non-Reuben loving friends – no worries! Now that I have this method down, I’ve thought of about five other classic sandwiches I can make into a Ramekin. Next up, I think, is my beloved Philly cheesesteak!


  1. Nik, I'll bet if you added a dash of caraway seed to the dressing mixture, it would create the flavor of the rye bread without any of the carbs. 🙂

  2. This is wonderful and totally hit the spot for the craving! I love your site and your recipes!

  3. This was DELICIOUS! I love Reubens and didn't even miss the bread. Thank you so much for your recipes!
    -Stacie from St. Louis

  4. Nummy Nummy to my Tummy, ate on it all week!

  5. I made the Reuben in the ramekin for myself for dinner this evening. OMG – it was awesome. Thanks for the FANTASTIC dish. I made one for my lunch tomorrow – outstanding!

  6. YUMMMMMM…So happy I saw this b4 Sunday!!! Definitely need to invest in some Ramekins too!!
    Thanks Nik!!

  7. Super easy and tasty! I am going back to work soon and have been looking for some easy make ahead meals! I made these and transferred them to little containers to easily reheat at the office.

  8. If you could figure out a ramekin "tuna noodle" my children and I would be forever grateful. It's one of their favorite dinners and I flat out refuse to make it because I'm too tempted.

  9. Hi Nik, I have just reached this web sit by mistake and seeing your fantastic dish on rubens ill have to try this dish. sometimes I need something new, thanks for your help… angi

  10. do not know if this published, I was asking if you can omit the sauerkraut.

    • Sure you can. It would not be Reuben themed anymore but if that's not your thing play with the recipe! Let me know if you come up with a good variation.